I read an article recently, which compared the origins of the Occupy Wall Street movement to the origins of the Tea Party movement. As someone who has paid attention to both movements, I believe nothing could be further from the truth. Below are just 15 differences between the Occupy Wall Street protests, and the Tea Party movement.
1. Occupy Wall Street is a grassroots movement, funded by people around the world, without corporate sponsorship.
The Tea Party is an AstroTurf movement, receiving most of its funding from corporate sponsorship, and Fox News and its supporters.
2. Occupy Wall Street wants less corporate influence over our Government.
The Tea Party wants less Governmental influence over corporations.
3. Occupy Wall Street didn’t receive mainstream media coverage until several weeks after it began.
The Tea Party held rallies across the country sponsored by Fox News, and even small rallies with minimal turnout received attention from other media outlets.
4. Occupy Wall Street protesters are unarmed.
The Tea Party protesters openly carried a large variety of guns, including assault rifles.
5. Over 1,000 Occupy Wall Street Protesters have been arrested.
Zero Tea Party Protesters have been arrested.
6. Occupy Wall Street doesn’t endorse either political party.
The Tea Party actively endorsed the Republican Party.
7. Occupy Wall Street protests have sparked similar protests around the world.
The Tea Party protests were ridiculed around the world.
8. Occupy Wall Street protests have more than 50% approval from the general public.
The Tea Party protests peaked at 18% approval from the general public.
9. Occupy Wall Street protesters represent the poor, the disenfranchised, and the people who don’t feel like they have a voice in our Government.
The Tea Party protesters represented the wealthy, the elite, and the corporations who already have too much influence in our Government.
10. Occupy Wall Street doesn’t want politicians to co-opt their movement.
The Tea Party protests regularly featured speeches from conservative political figures like Sarah Palin and Glenn Beck.
11. Occupy Wall Street protesters signs are spelled correctly.
Many Tea Party protest signs featured glaring spelling and grammatical errors.
12. Occupy Wall Street is supported by the youth in this country.
A majority of the Tea Party’s support came from middle-age citizens and people 65 and up.
13. Occupy Wall Street represents the 99% of Americans who aren’t millionaires and billionaires, and who don’t have a voice in our Government.
The Tea Party represents the wealthiest Americans, and wants the Government to stop trying to tax them.
14. Occupy Wall Street protesters are setting up camps across the country, to get attention from the media and to show that they’re serious.
The Tea Party went home as soon as their corporately sponsored rallies were over.
15. Occupy Wall Street has received endless criticism from the right-wing.
The Tea Party received endless and unconditional praise from the right-wing.
Hopefully this has been an informative list, of some of the more obvious differences between the Occupy Wall Street and Tea Party movements.